Research

Current Projects:

Population genetics and the effects of polyploidy on diversity in the genus Phlox

We are interested in this genus of wildflowers (which are almost entirely North American natives) because Phlox species have repeatedly and independently doubled their number of chromosomes.  This phenomenon, called polyploidy, is fascinating from our perspectives of plant taxonomy, phylogenetics, and population genetics.  Read more…

 

The genetic basis of glyphosate resistance in the Central Valley agricultural weed hairy fleabane:

Agricultural weeds cause crop yield loss by competing with crop plants for resources, and chemical herbicides are one of the most effective ways to control these pest plants. The herbicide glyphosate (RoundUp®) is widely used in Central Valley agriculture, and many weeds have evolved resistance to this chemical, including hairy fleabane (Erigeron bonariensis).  Read more…

 

Investigation of the recent agricultural invasion of Palmer amaranth:

The most agriculturally problematic species in the weedy plant genus Amaranthus is A. palmeri (Palmer amaranth), which has rapidly evolved resistance to six different chemical classes of herbicides.  It is native to the southwestern U.S., but causes the most crop yield loss in the eastern U.S., and little is known about its invasion from west to east.  Read more…